Staffers in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have been instructed by the Trump administration not to use the term “climate change” in their research and instead to use “weather extremes.” [theHill]
According to February emails acquired and published by The Guardian, the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) are being forced to change the language of many climate change related terms. Climate change is now “weather extremes.” Climate change adaptation is now “resilience to weather,” and “reducing greenhouse gases” is now “building soil organic matter and increasing nutrient use efficiency.”
“We won’t change the modeling, just how we talk about it,” said NRCS’s director of soil health Bianca Moebius-Clune, who was instructed to pass on the new language to her staff.
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“We won’t change the modeling, just how we talk about it,” Bianca Moebius-Clune, the NRCS’s director of soil health, wrote in an email to staff on Feb. 16, according to the report. Moebius-Clune said the new language was given to her to pass on to staff.
The Trump administration has aggressively fought efforts to curb climate change, reversing many Obama-era regulations and appointing climate change skeptics at the head of pivotal federal agencies, including the USDA’s chief scientist Sam Clovis (who is not actually a scientist).
“These records reveal Trump’s active censorship of science in the name of his political agenda,” said Meg Townsend, open government attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity.
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“To think that federal agency staff who report about the air, water and soil that sustains the health of our nation must conform their reporting with the Trump administration’s anti-science rhetoric is appalling and dangerous for America and the greater global community.”